Property insurers are falling short in some areas of the claims process even as they earn high marks for overall customer satisfaction, according to the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Property Claims Satisfaction Study.
J.D. Power said insurers continue to misfire in how they keep customers informed on the progress of a claim, the time to settle the claim and the fairness of the settlement. Consumers ranked each area among the lowest in a series of satisfaction. That becomes a competitive problem as customers demand more personalized coverage, according to the consumer insight, advisory and data/analytics firm.
“Overall customer satisfaction remains high and the leading providers continue to outperform their peers by a comfortable margin,” David Pieffer, Property & Casualty Lead for J.D. Power Insurance Intelligence, said in prepared remarks. “There also are obvious areas for improvement where insurers could do a better job of managing customer expectations. As the industry keeps shifting toward more personalized, usage-based and on-demand insurance options, the ability to communicate effectively and make claimants feel at ease along the way will be a key differentiator for top-performing insurers.”
Among the study’s findings:
Overall customer satisfaction among claimants whose claim length was as described was an average of 905 out of 1,000 points. When that claim took longer than expected, the number dipped to 754. When there is no claim deadline, satisfaction dips lower, to 753. The key message: Carriers and agents gain if they accurately set expectations for the length of an open claim.
Concierge services can boost customer satisfaction, if provided at first notice of loss. J.D. Power found customer satisfaction jumped by 42 points when insurers make a hotel reservation for a claimant immediately after FNOL. Discussing repair options boosted customer satisfaction by 44 points, and notifying a repair company boosted the number by 38 points. Services that helped customers schedule an estimate hiked that number up 33 points.
Claims service varies dramatically among insurers. J.D. Power found the gap in property claims satisfaction between the highest- and lowest- performing insurers is 76 points.
The study measured satisfaction with the property claims experience among customers who have filed a claim for damages by examining five factors (listed in order of importance): settlement; claim servicing; first notice of loss; estimation process; and repair process. J.D. Power received responses from 6,374 homeowners insurance customers, between April and November 2018.
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